Compassionate Friends bids farewell


The Compassionate Friends of Saipan will be closing down in the CNMI, but will be morphing into the “We Remember Them CNMI,” still with the same goal of offering support for grieving families here.

In a press release sent by the organization’s founders—Jill Derickson, Donna Krum, and Maggie George—it said the steering committee of The Compassionate Friends of Saipan met for their annual meeting last Feb. 24 to discuss whether or not the organization should or should not be kept running.

“Sadly, very sadly, we’ve come to the conclusion that the organization should not continue and we have decided to close The Compassionate Friends of Saipan,” stated the press release.

The steering committee, however, feels that there is value in continuing support for those in the community who have lost children, siblings and grandchildren and there has also been great interest in the organization’s annual candlelighting event.

“We want to continue to offer support, and will be using the name ‘We Remember Them CNMI,’” it said.

The focus will now be directed toward grieving families across the CNMI.

As a first step, Krum and George are organizing a brunch, in conjunction with International Bereaved Mother’s Day. July is Bereaved Parents Awareness Month, and planning has begun for a Walk to Remember. The event is for mothers to remember and celebrate their motherhood and the children they have lost.

According to the press release, if assistance is found, the new group (We Remember Them CNMI) hopes to continue the candlelighting tradition, in conjunction with The Compassionate Friends’ annual event. The group aims to start planning in August.

The Compassionate Friends of Saipan is a worldwide organization that was extended to Saipan over seven years ago to provide hope, comfort, and understanding to grieving families who have lost a loved one.

In related news, the statement said that Tania Mendiola from Tinian has started a Facebook support page called “Our Children in Heaven” that offers support for parents and siblings who have lost their loved ones.

For additional information, contact Derickson at 989-9821 or email her at, Krum at 783-1900 or email her at, or George at 989-6825.

Kimberly Bautista | Reporter
Kimberly Albiso Bautista has covered a wide range of news beats, including the community, housing, crime, and more. She now covers sports for the Saipan Tribune. Contact her at

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